NLPS is seeking input on its 2024-2025 Draft School Calendar. The calendar was approved in principle by the Board of Trustees on January 17, 2024 and will be reviewed by the Board again at the end of February.
There are some significant differences between the proposed 2024-2025 School Calendar and calendars from the past few years. This is based on previous feedback received from stakeholders. The calendar was developed by a committee that included the ATA Local #15 President, a teacher, two school administrators and members of the division's People Services team. The parameters the committee considered were the impact inclement weather has had on recent calendars, the impacts on student achievement, student mental health and wellness, and the pace of the calendar.
Here are some of the changes that were made compared to previous calendars:
- The proposed calendar has two additional instructional days (180 compared to 178) and operational days (194 compared to 192). This will provide greater flexibility to deal with the impacts of inclement weather, while still meeting the minimum instructional hours required by Alberta Education (950 hours for grades 1-9 and 1,000 hours for 10-12). The proposed calendar has 969 hours of instructional time for grades 1-9 compared to 958 in previous calendars, and 1,020 for grades 10-12 compared to 1,008 previously.
- The professional development day that was scheduled prior to school starting in previous years, has been shifted to later in the year. This is based on feedback from staff that indicated the PD would be more effective later in the year. This reduces the organizational days prior to start up from four to three.
- Students would start school on August 29th, providing staff and students with two days together prior to the Labour Day long weekend. Starting before Labour Day creates balanced semesters in the calendar, and also provides the opportunity to have a four-day long weekend for families at Thanksgiving and a Family Friday in March.
- In the proposed calendar, the end of Semester I now aligns with the end of provincial diploma exams, eliminating instructional days for high schools students that were previously scheduled following the exams. The proposed end of Semester I is January 28th, with Semester II starting on January 29th.
- The proposed calendar includes a Spring Break at the end of March, instead of a break that aligns with Easter. Students and staff would still get a four-day long weekend at Easter.
Parents and guardians can review the calendar and leave feedback in the discussion forums on our Engage NLPS site. Our calendar consultation will run from January 22nd to February 4th. All feedback will be reviewed and may be used to make modifications to the calendar before it is reviewed by the Board at the end of February. The finalized calendar will be shared with all stakeholders once it is approved.